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San Clemente and a weekend away in Mexico

Visit to a bonus country while staying at a Spanish Village by the Sea

semi-overcast 21 °C
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San Clemente describes itself as a "Spanish Village by the Sea" and is located on California's Pacific Coast about half way between Los Angeles and San Diego. It was founded by a former Mayor of Seattle, Ole Hanson, who envisaged it becoming a haven for Californians who tired of "the big city". Its most obvious landmark is its beautiful 1,296 foot (395 metre) long wooden pier original built in 1928.

San Clemente Pier

San Clemente Pier


Looking out along San Clemente Pier

Looking out along San Clemente Pier


Looking back along San Clemente Pier

Looking back along San Clemente Pier

Sat on a bluff-top above the pier is Casa Romantica, with a red tiled roof and white stucco arches it was the original home of San Clemente's founder Ole Hanson built in 1928 in the Spanish style and is now heritage listed. However what San Clemente is more famous for is La Casa Pacifica which was bought by President Richard Nixon in 1969 as his vacation home during his presidency and became known as the "Western White House".

Casa Romantica above San Clemente Pier

Casa Romantica above San Clemente Pier


Looking along San Clemente State Beach towards La Casa Pacifica with surfers waiting for waves and the Amtrak heading south to San Diego

Looking along San Clemente State Beach towards La Casa Pacifica with surfers waiting for waves and the Amtrak heading south to San Diego

Mexico was not a country I thought I would be able to include in my itinerary of my trip around the world so I was very pleased when the chance of a weekend south of the border arose while I was in San Clemente. We drove down to Rosarito Beach (Playas de Rosarito in Spanish), a Pacific coastal resort 30 miles south of San Diego in the Mexican state of Baja California that is very popular for its beaches and dance clubs. Our hotel, around which the surrounding town grew, was originally opened in 1925 but since then has had a lot built onto it including the 17 storey Presido Tower in which we stayed.

The Pacifico Tower at the Rosarito Beach Hotel

The Pacifico Tower at the Rosarito Beach Hotel


Security Checkpoint at the Rosarito Beach Hotel

Security Checkpoint at the Rosarito Beach Hotel


The street outside the Rosarito Beach Hotel

The street outside the Rosarito Beach Hotel


Corridor in the old part of the Rosarito Beach Hotel

Corridor in the old part of the Rosarito Beach Hotel

In addition to bars, restaurants and a ballroom the hotel we were staying at also had a lovely golden sand beach and a quarter mile long private pier. Unfortunately the weather was not at its best while we were there so the pier was closed and there were few takers for the horse or quad bike riding however it was evident from the volleyball nets, stands of empty seating and other paraphernalia that this could often become a very busy beach.

View from the beach of the Rosarito Beach Hotel

View from the beach of the Rosarito Beach Hotel


Horses and quad bikes waiting for tourists on Rosarito Beach

Horses and quad bikes waiting for tourists on Rosarito Beach


The pier at the Rosarito Beach Hotel

The pier at the Rosarito Beach Hotel


The beach at the Rosarito Beach Hotel

The beach at the Rosarito Beach Hotel

We did venture south to Puerto Nuevo passing the enormous 75 foot (23 metre) high statue of Christ of the Sacred Heart (Cristo del Sagrado Corazon in Spanish) above the highway at the town of El Morro. Puerto Nuevo itself is known as "the Lobster Capital of Baja" and having been coaxed into a restaurant and chosen the crustaceans we wanted to eat we enjoyed lovely fresh lobster for Sunday lunch.

Christ of the Sacred Heart Statute above the highway at El Morro

Christ of the Sacred Heart Statute above the highway at El Morro


Entering the town of Puerto Nuevo in Baja California Mexico

Entering the town of Puerto Nuevo in Baja California Mexico


Street scene in Puerto Nuevo

Street scene in Puerto Nuevo


Lobster ready for the pot in Puerto Nuevo

Lobster ready for the pot in Puerto Nuevo

On the Monday morning it was time for us to return north across the USA border, experiencing the heavy traffic in Tijuana just south of San Diego on the way. Thankfully our hotel was part of the Border Fastpass Scheme and this enabled us to use a dedicated lane to avoid the chaos and often 2 hour delay crossing over the Mexico/USA border.

Entering Tijuna on the way back to the USA border

Entering Tijuna on the way back to the USA border


Traffic jam in downtown Tijuana

Traffic jam in downtown Tijuana


Following the signs in Tijuna to the USA border

Following the signs in Tijuna to the USA border


Chaos approaching the USA border, thankfully we had a Border Fastpass from our hotel :-)

Chaos approaching the USA border, thankfully we had a Border Fastpass from our hotel :-)

On our return to San Clemente we visited family in Valley Center just north of San Diego and managed to stop at Mission San Luis Rey de Francia founded in 1798 at Oceanside on the way back. The 21 Spanish missions in California are a series of religious and military outposts established by Spanish Catholics of the Franciscan Order between 1769 and 1833 to spread the Christian faith among the local Native Americans. Starting from San Diego they stretch north with each mission about 30 miles apart - considered a long days ride on horseback or 3 days walk. All told I saw 5 of the 21 missions while I was in California, including the Mission at San Juan Capistrano which I had visited on a previous visit to California and we passed as I got on the Amtrak train to Fullerton.

Mission San Luis Rey de Francia at Oceanside

Mission San Luis Rey de Francia at Oceanside


Another view of the Mission San Luis Rey de Francia at Oceanside

Another view of the Mission San Luis Rey de Francia at Oceanside


The Mission at San Juan Capistrano

The Mission at San Juan Capistrano


My train pulls into San Juan Capistrano Station to take me to Fullerton

My train pulls into San Juan Capistrano Station to take me to Fullerton

Posted by FrancisRTW 02:00 Archived in Mexico Tagged beaches churches trains hotels california piers missions mexican us_presidents Comments (0)

The RMS Queen Mary

Visiting an elegant Queen and warships at Long Beach

semi-overcast 22 °C
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Although I have been to Los Angeles three times previously visiting family I have never been to Long Beach and was keen to see the retired 1936 art deco ocean liner RMS Queen Mary that is permanently docked there. Alongside her is the Soviet Foxtrot Class b-427 Scorpion Submarine purchased from the Russians in the 1990s and also the large dome that was once used to display the Hughes H-4 Hercules "Spruce Goose" before it was sold in 1998 to the Evergreen Aviation Museum in Oregon. The Spruce Goose only flew once in 1947 (for a distance of about a mile about 70 feet above the water) and is the largest flying boat ever built with the longest wingspan of any aircraft in history.

The RMS Queen Mary berthed up at Long Beach

The RMS Queen Mary berthed up at Long Beach


The RMS Queen Mary and Soviet b-427 'Scorpion' Submarine at Long Beach

The RMS Queen Mary and Soviet b-427 'Scorpion' Submarine at Long Beach


The now empty display dome for the 'Spruce Goose' Flying Boat alongside the RMS Queen Mary

The now empty display dome for the 'Spruce Goose' Flying Boat alongside the RMS Queen Mary

We began our tour however with a visit aboard the Cold War vintage Soviet Foxtrot Class b-427 Scorpion Submarine that floats alongside the RMS Queen Mary. Launched in Leningrad in 1972 she was part of the Soviet Pacific Submarine Fleet based out of Vladivostok and was one of 79 Foxtrot Class submarines that served with the Soviet Navy before being decommissioned in 1994. She is a contemporary of the Australian Submarine HMAS Ovens I looked around in Freemantle and it was strange to think of them on opposing sides and hunting each other.

The Soviet b-427 Scorpion Submarine alongside the RMS Queen Mary at Long Beach

The Soviet b-427 Scorpion Submarine alongside the RMS Queen Mary at Long Beach


The Forward Torpedo Room aboard the Soviet b-427 Scorpion

The Forward Torpedo Room aboard the Soviet b-427 Scorpion


Close up of the forward torpedo tubes aboard the b-427 Scorpion

Close up of the forward torpedo tubes aboard the b-427 Scorpion


Sonar Room aboard the b-427 Scorpion

Sonar Room aboard the b-427 Scorpion

Although the Soviet submarine in the film is a nuclear attack submarine and a lot bigger, walking past the officer's ward room and then climbing through the Control Room to look through the Attack Periscope with all the Russian writing everywhere I couldn't help thinking of Sean Connery in the 1990 film "The Hunt for Red October"!

Officer's Ward Room aboard the b-427 Scorpion

Officer's Ward Room aboard the b-427 Scorpion


Hatch into the Control Room aboard the b-427 Scorpion

Hatch into the Control Room aboard the b-427 Scorpion


Me looking through the attack periscope aboard the b-427 Scorpion

Me looking through the attack periscope aboard the b-427 Scorpion


Assorted knobs at the rear of the Control Room aboard the b-427 Scorpion

Assorted knobs at the rear of the Control Room aboard the b-427 Scorpion

The b-427 Scorpion had a crew of 56 sailors, 10 midshipman and 12 officers and felt a lot more cramped than the HMAS Ovens. Since arriving in Long Beach with Hollywood not too far away she has appeared as a Russian, American, German and even a Japanese submarine in many films, TV shows, commercials and documentaries.

The Galley aboard the b-427 Scorpion

The Galley aboard the b-427 Scorpion


The Engine Room aboard the b-427 Scorpion

The Engine Room aboard the b-427 Scorpion


Crew bunks in the Rear Torpedo Room of the b-427 Scorpion

Crew bunks in the Rear Torpedo Room of the b-427 Scorpion

We then moved on to the main event, the RMS Queen Mary. Legend has it that she was originally going to be called the Queen Victoria but when as per protocol Cunard approached King George V for his blessing for the ship's proposed name saying, "We have decided to name our new ship after England's greatest Queen," (meaning Queen Victoria, the King's Grandmother) the King reportedly replied "My wife (Queen Mary) will be delighted that you are naming the ship after her" and so she was called the Queen Mary instead.

The view boarding the Queen Mary at Long Beach

The view boarding the Queen Mary at Long Beach


The outside Promenade Deck on the Queen Mary

The outside Promenade Deck on the Queen Mary


The Ship's Bell on the Queen Mary

The Ship's Bell on the Queen Mary


Marble Plaque and portrait of Queen Mary over the Main Staircase on the Promenade Deck

Marble Plaque and portrait of Queen Mary over the Main Staircase on the Promenade Deck

Our guide for the main "Glory Days" tour of the ship was a retired Captain who was extremely knowledgeable about the ship. The Queen Mary was built in Clydebank (Scotland) and when launched in 1936 set a new benchmark in transatlantic travel and was considered by the rich and famous as the only way to travel. On our tour (with exception of the First Class Lounge or "Queens Salon" which was closed for a private function) we were shown around all the main rooms of the ship with their luxurious art-deco furnishings.

The First Class Restaurant aboard the Queen Mary (also known as the Grand Salon)

The First Class Restaurant aboard the Queen Mary (also known as the Grand Salon)


Ornate map on the back wall of the First Class Restaurant used to show the location of the Queen Mary while crossing the Atlantic

Ornate map on the back wall of the First Class Restaurant used to show the location of the Queen Mary while crossing the Atlantic


The Observation Bar on the forward Promenade Deck

The Observation Bar on the forward Promenade Deck

Queen Mary herself appears to have only briefly visited the ship once but she proved popular with Hollywood stars such as Bob Hope and was frequently used by British Prime Minister Winston Churchill to cross the Atlantic during WWII. The Queen Mary Hotel currently features 314 of the original guest rooms including 305 staterooms and 9 full suites. Interestingly the bathroom of the suite used by Queen Mary we looked around had 4 taps - separate sets of hot and cold taps for fresh and salt water.

The Royal Suite's Bedroom aboard the Queen Mary

The Royal Suite's Bedroom aboard the Queen Mary


The Royal Suite's Day Room aboard the Queen Mary

The Royal Suite's Day Room aboard the Queen Mary


Bathroom in the Queen Mary's Royal Suite - note the 2 sets of hot and cold taps for fresh and salt water

Bathroom in the Queen Mary's Royal Suite - note the 2 sets of hot and cold taps for fresh and salt water


First class corridor stretching the length of the ship

First class corridor stretching the length of the ship

The Queen Mary also had a Travel Bureau (recently restored) for first class passengers to make hotel reservations before their arrival at their final destinations. There was also an indoor swimming pool with an art deco entrance; when we were taken inside it was very dark as these days it is used mainly on the Queen Mary's Ghost & Legends Tour which can only be described as "corny" as they try to scare people in true ghost train fashion with stories of calamities aboard the ship such as the stoker who was tragically chopped in half by a bulkhead door. The biggest disaster to befell the Queen Mary was her collision with and sinking of the British cruiser HMS Curacao off the coast of Ireland in 1942 when 331 lives were lost. This is remembered on the Ghost & Legends Tour with a recreation of flooding in the side of ship down in one of the engine rooms.

The Travel Bureau on Main Deck

The Travel Bureau on Main Deck


The art-deco entrance to the First Class Swimming Pool

The art-deco entrance to the First Class Swimming Pool


The darkened First Class Swimming Pool aboard the Queen Mary

The darkened First Class Swimming Pool aboard the Queen Mary


Simulated water flooding in the side of ship down in one of the Engine Rooms during the 'Ghost and Legends Tour'

Simulated water flooding in the side of ship down in one of the Engine Rooms during the 'Ghost and Legends Tour'

The Bridge of the ship was spacious with polished wheels and levers and had a view forward up the Los Angeles River with the b-427 Scorpion Submarine alongside. Included on the deck is a Bofors Gun as used to defend the ship during WWII.

The Bridge aboard the Queen Mary

The Bridge aboard the Queen Mary


The view forward from the Bridge with the b-427 Scorpion Submarine alongside

The view forward from the Bridge with the b-427 Scorpion Submarine alongside


Me on the Forward Deck of the Queen Mary

Me on the Forward Deck of the Queen Mary


WWII Bofors Gun on the deck of the Queen Mary

WWII Bofors Gun on the deck of the Queen Mary

Towards the back of the ship with a separate walkway is the "Queen Mary Story" Museum which included various models and memorabilia from the ship as well as mock ups of different types of cabins used during her history. There is also access through the museum to one of the Queen Mary's engine rooms and a propeller submerged in a tank of water to preserve it.

View back along the Queen Mary portside from outside the Bridge

View back along the Queen Mary portside from outside the Bridge


Inside an Engine Room aboard the Queen Mary

Inside an Engine Room aboard the Queen Mary


One of the Queen Mary's Propellers

One of the Queen Mary's Propellers

One of the most interesting periods in the Queen Mary's history is her involvement in WWII. The ship was called up as a troopship and affectionately known as the "Grey Ghost" for the drab shade of grey she was painted and ability to evade U-boats because of her speed. Eventually during the course of the war the Queen Mary carried more than 800,000 troops (including 16,683 on a single voyage - a record that remains to this day) and travelled more than 600,000 miles playing a significant role in virtually every major Allied campaign. Winston Churchill credited the Queen Mary with shortening the War by a year and amongst the exhibits were GI bunk beds, a gym and weaponry used during this period. After the war the Queen Mary spent the following year repatriating American troops and GI brides before finally being demobbed and returned to Cunard her owners in September 1946.

Ship Plan and Bunks as used during WWII

Ship Plan and Bunks as used during WWII


Example of the extra weaponry mounted aboard to protect the Queen Mary during WWII

Example of the extra weaponry mounted aboard to protect the Queen Mary during WWII


Gym as used by American Soldiers aboard the Queen Mary during WWII

Gym as used by American Soldiers aboard the Queen Mary during WWII


Example of a cabin used by GI Brides after WWII

Example of a cabin used by GI Brides after WWII

When the Queen Mary was put up for sale in 1967 she was purchased by the City of Long Beach to become a signature tourist attraction and high class hotel which she continues to be today. In addition to the Queen Mary Glory Days and Ghosts & Legends Tours that we signed up for there was also a Her Finest Hour: A WWII Tour and Diana: Legacy of a Princess Exhibition containing a collection of her evening gowns, dresses and other memorabilia but that was more than we could take!

Hotel Reception on 'A' Deck of the Queen Mary

Hotel Reception on 'A' Deck of the Queen Mary


Queen Elisabeth and Prince Phillip's portraits on the wall of the lobby on 'A' Deck

Queen Elisabeth and Prince Phillip's portraits on the wall of the lobby on 'A' Deck


Shops on the Promenade Deck aboard the Queen Mary

Shops on the Promenade Deck aboard the Queen Mary


Entrance to the 'Diana: Legacy of a Princess' Exhibition aboard the Queen Mary

Entrance to the 'Diana: Legacy of a Princess' Exhibition aboard the Queen Mary

As you can probably judge by the number of photographs in this entry, by the time we finished at the Queen Mary there was little time left to explore the rest of Long Beach! We did however manage to walk along the waterfront at San Pedro watching the container ships entering and leaving Los Angeles Harbor, the busiest container port in the USA and also took some photographs of the WWII Battleship USS Iowa that was berthed there. The USS Iowa closed as we got there, I guess I'll have to see if I can do a tour of one of her sister ships on the East Coast instead!

Container Ships entering and leaving Los Angeles Harbor under the Vincent Thomas Bridge (the USS Iowa can be seen on the left)

Container Ships entering and leaving Los Angeles Harbor under the Vincent Thomas Bridge (the USS Iowa can be seen on the left)


USS Iowa at San Pedro

USS Iowa at San Pedro


USS Iowa (BB-61) at San Pedro

USS Iowa (BB-61) at San Pedro

On the dock side by the bow of the USS Iowa was a 6 foot copy of Seward Johnson's iconic "Sailor kissing a Nurse" (aka "Unconditional Surrender") sculpture that seems popular alongside US Museum Ships (the original statute was 25 foot high and was based on photograph taken in Times Square New York on V-J Day 1945).

A copy of the iconic 'Sailor kissing a Nurse' statue beside the USS Iowa

A copy of the iconic 'Sailor kissing a Nurse' statue beside the USS Iowa

Posted by FrancisRTW 02:00 Archived in USA Tagged museums hotels boat california cruise_ships harbours submarines warships film_locations Comments (0)

Denver and the 'Colorado Rockies'

Sightseeing in Downtown Denver and then it's time to watch some baseball at Coors Field

sunny 28 °C
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A visit to the US Mint was actually on my bucket list having been unable to have a look around it last time I was in Denver. Sadly I was to be disappointed as it turned out we needed to pre-book the free tours about 3 months ahead! Fortunately tours around the US Mint's other location in Philadelphia don't need to be pre-booked so this item on my bucket list can wait until I get there later during my trip.

The visitor's entrance to the US Mint in Denver

The visitor's entrance to the US Mint in Denver

We then walked across the Civic Center Park in downtown Denver, past a copy of the Liberty Bell (the original is in Philadelphia) to the Colorado State Capitol. The building looks like a copy of the Capitol in Washington although sadly the gold plated dome itself is currently obscured by white sheeting while essential repairs are carried out. Denver has been dubbed the "Mile High City" and sure enough a step leading up to the main entrance is engraved as being precisely "One Mile above Sea Level" and I had the obligatory photograph taken of me standing on it.

Mounted Policeman in the Civic Center Park in front of the State Capitol Denver

Mounted Policeman in the Civic Center Park in front of the State Capitol Denver


A copy of the Liberty Bell in Lincoln Park outside the State Capitol Denver

A copy of the Liberty Bell in Lincoln Park outside the State Capitol Denver


The Civil War Memorial in front of the steps of the State Capitol in Denver

The Civil War Memorial in front of the steps of the State Capitol in Denver


Me stood on the 'One Mile above Sea Level' step leading up into the State Capitol in Denver

Me stood on the 'One Mile above Sea Level' step leading up into the State Capitol in Denver

A short distance from the Capitol is the History Colorado Center, an innovative new museum that first opened in April 2012. Their headline temporary attraction while I was there (and about the only exhibit we weren't allowed to photograph) was the Jefferson Bible borrowed from the Smithsonian Institute in Washington. This bible is in effect a personal scrapbook of selected verses from the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John pasted together in chronological order by Thomas Jefferson (principle author of the USA 1776 Declaration of Independence) to create a single narrative and then duplicated side by side in four languages (English, French, Latin and Greek).

The star of the museum for me however was the Anschutz Hamilton Hall with a map of Colorado for its floor on which we were able to push around a pair of seven foot high "steam punk" time machines to various hot spots on the map. The clocks on the time machines would then wind back and the video screens would tell quirky stories from the history of the location.

Moving the time machines around the Map of Colorado on the ground floor of the History Colorado Center

Moving the time machines around the Map of Colorado on the ground floor of the History Colorado Center


Close up of one the time machines in the History Colorado Center

Close up of one the time machines in the History Colorado Center

On the same floor as the time machines was Destination Colorado, a hands on recreation of life on the Colorado prairies in the 1920s. Here you could milk a virtual cow (the bucket lights up as you squeeze the teat!), drive a Model T Ford or visit a General Store - really something aimed more at school children than ourselves so surprisingly we didn't stay there long. A lot more interesting though was Colorado Stories on the top floor.

Me milking a cow in 'Destination Colorado' at the History Colorado Center

Me milking a cow in 'Destination Colorado' at the History Colorado Center

Colorado Stories contained galleries highlighting aspects of the history of about 8 localities around the state. I found the gallery on Bent's Fort, a prairie trading post from the mid nineteenth century, particularly interesting as included amongst the sample of goods from around the world it traded with local Indians was Stroud Scarlet from back home in Gloucestershire in the UK (Stroud Scarlet was the red cloth used historically for British Army redcoats).

Bent's Fort in 'Colorado Stories' - and amongst the goods being traded is Stroud Scarlet Cloth from back home in Gloucestershire!

Bent's Fort in 'Colorado Stories' - and amongst the goods being traded is Stroud Scarlet Cloth from back home in Gloucestershire!

Amongst the other exhibits in Colorado Stories were galleries on silver mining in Silverton (which reminded me of my trip down the Lebanon Mine a few days earlier), life in the WWII Amache Relocation Center for people of Japanese ancestry and the 1864 Sand Creek Massacre of Indians by local militia (probably one of the more tragic stories from Colorado's history).

Explosives ready to be set in the Silverton Mine gallery of 'Colorado Stories'

Explosives ready to be set in the Silverton Mine gallery of 'Colorado Stories'


Re-creation inside 'Colorado Stories' of a WWII relocation center for people of Japanese ancestry

Re-creation inside 'Colorado Stories' of a WWII relocation center for people of Japanese ancestry

We then escaped the museum and went for afternoon tea at the Brown Palace Hotel which is considered the landmark hotel in Denver. Originally opened in 1892, my guidebook describes it as an "Italian Renaissance-style structure with elegant dining rooms and a common area based around a sunlit eight story atrium lobby with tiers of iron railings." Famous former guests at the hotel include the Beatles, various US presidents and the 'unsinkable' Molly Brown from the Titanic. Before making our way home we had afternoon tea with scones and finger sandwiches served on a 3 tier silver pedestal tray washed down with Earl Grey and Kir Royale - cousins that lunch!

The Brown Palace Hotel in Denver

The Brown Palace Hotel in Denver


The eight story atrium lobby inside the Brown Palace Hotel

The eight story atrium lobby inside the Brown Palace Hotel


Afternoon tea being served in the lobby of the Brown Palace Hotel

Afternoon tea being served in the lobby of the Brown Palace Hotel


Sidewalk plaque commemorating the Beatles getting struck in a lift at the Brown Palace Hotel in 1964

Sidewalk plaque commemorating the Beatles getting struck in a lift at the Brown Palace Hotel in 1964

I do enjoy watching live baseball and have been kindly taken to games on my last two visits to the USA. Earlier in my trip I had seen the LA Dodgers beat the Milwaukee Brewers in double quick time while in Los Angeles but it was now time to see if I was going to be a good luck charm for the Colorado Rockies as well. So the following day we returned to downtown Denver to Coors Field, the home of the Colorado Rockies Baseball Team, with me dressed in a purple Rockies "Dexter Fowler 24" shirt (Dexter is a Rockies centerfielder) to watch them play the San Francisco Giants.

Coors Field - home of the Colorado Rockies Baseball Team

Coors Field - home of the Colorado Rockies Baseball Team


Dexter Fowler at the plate for the Colorado Rockies

Dexter Fowler at the plate for the Colorado Rockies

The game started well with the Rockies taking a 5 run lead including a grand slam home run (i.e. a home run with all 3 bases loaded) but then the Giants came back with the Rockies eventually winning 10-9 in a nail biting finish (am I beginning to sound like I know what I'm talking about?). After the game we went looking for an Irish Bar in Lower Downtown (universally known as LoDo by the locals) to celebrate and found Scruffy Murphys, coincidentally exactly the same name (although no connection) as the Irish Bar I found in Sydney, Australia.

Grand Slam Home Run for the Colorado Rockies <img class='img' src='https://tp.daa.ms/img/emoticons/icon_smile.gif' width='15' height='15' alt=':)' title='' />

Grand Slam Home Run for the Colorado Rockies :)


Pablo Sandoval (aka Panda) at the plate for the San Francisco Giants

Pablo Sandoval (aka Panda) at the plate for the San Francisco Giants

Scruffy Murphys Irish Bar in Denver where we went to celebrate (didn't I visit its namesake in Sydney?)

Scruffy Murphys Irish Bar in Denver where we went to celebrate (didn't I visit its namesake in Sydney?)

Three days later I had another opportunity to see the Colorado Rockies play at home, this time against the Arizona Diamondbacks. By now it had dawned on me that US baseball fixtures are described the other way round to sports fixtures back home i.e. away team @ home team rather than home team v away team; trust the Americans to be different!

Me posing with my ticket by the player statue outside the stadium before the game

Me posing with my ticket by the player statue outside the stadium before the game


Everyone stands as the USA National Anthem is played before the game

Everyone stands as the USA National Anthem is played before the game


Me enjoying a 'Rockie Dog' while watching the baseball

Me enjoying a 'Rockie Dog' while watching the baseball

Although the Arizona Diamondbacks attracted a smaller crowd than the San Francisco Giants a few days previously it was no less exciting and I witnessed my first Major League Baseball game go into extra innings with the two teams tied at 4-4 after the usual 9 innings. We had to leave but listened to the game on the radio on the way back as the Rockies went on to win 5-4 in the 'bottom' (i.e. while the 2nd team is batting) of the 10th.

Another Home Run for the Rockies - perhaps I am a lucky charm at the baseball after all?

Another Home Run for the Rockies - perhaps I am a lucky charm at the baseball after all?


'Dinger' - the Colorado Rockies Mascot - up to no good again outside the away team's dugout

'Dinger' - the Colorado Rockies Mascot - up to no good again outside the away team's dugout

Posted by FrancisRTW 02:00 Archived in USA Tagged museums hotels beer colorado sport city videos mints external_links Comments (0)

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